The Day I Killed My Father: Mario Sabino

‘The day I killed my father was a bright day, although the light was hazy, without shadows or contours.’ Knowing who the killer is from the very first page is an unlikely way to begin a novel, but in the hands of Brazilian debut novelist Mario Sabino, it works exceptionally well. We move back and forth in time, trying to make sense as to how and why the main protagonist has done this. At stages we are witness to childhood memories retold, then the reader sits in on sessions with a psychologist.

The author uses literature, history, religion even poetry to draw the reader into this world – and draw you in he does. At times, I couldn’t put the book down. Chilling and sad, even on the same page, this book (which was a bestseller in Brazil) is one of the best I have read for a long time. The translation is by renowned Australian translator Alison Entrekin and was commissioned by Scribe – and for that they both should be congratulated.